Two Sisters of Fayetteville
by Tamar Anolic
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Pub Date 01 Oct 2022 | Archive Date 27 Oct 2022
Seventeen-year-old Joanna Upshaw and her sister, sixteen-year-old Hannah, are two of twelve siblings in an insular, conservative, and evangelical Christian family- same as the Duggars, whose reality show they watch on TV. Joanna in particular is exhausted by the demands of helping her mother with the housework and childcare attendant in such a large family. She is also beginning to realize that she doesn’t measure up to her parents’ vision of a perfect Christian woman- or to any of their strict rules.
Hannah is the sister that Joanna is closest to, the one that shares her fatigue and anxiety. Both of them have spent their whole lives learning that their highest calling is to marry and have as many children as possible. However, as Joanna watches Hannah and two of their brothers court with the intention of marrying, she questions whether she is capable of doing the same, especially as her parents shoo her marriage prospects away one at a time. Afraid of becoming the old maid that never amounts to anything, Joanna finally makes plans to get away from her parents forever.
Fans of Jennifer Mathieu’s Devoted and Julia Watts’ Quiver will like this book.
Average rating from 11 members
This was definitely an interesting read. I liked the relationship between the two sisters, and how many of the siblings supported each other in a very challenging home environment. I loved the main characters journey of finding herself, what she believed and what she wanted and needed in her life.
Three adult children in a Quiverfull family make plans to escape, however they can, and manage to do so albeit not without trauma. For a novel about ultra-conservative Christians, I was surprised by how little the characters talked about religion, focusing more on their controlling father and other community members. It's all a bit predictable, and the characters are not particularly deep or well-developed, but the novel does address some of the ways women are used and abused in the movement.
I liked the idea of reading a book about another family that seems like The Duggars. Maybe I expected to come to more of an understanding of ultra conservative Christian families. This book did not provide this, instead it talked more about the strictness of the parents and the growing resentments or in some of the siblings cases, acceptance. Wished the characters had more depth..
Being in a big family can come with a lot of responsibilities and is absolutely exhausting. Joanna begins to realize that she doesn't really want to live with all of her parents strict rules. Is she willing to give up her family to get what she really wants?
Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for providing me with an ebook ARC copy.
All thoughts and opinions are my own.
With the mention of the Duggar family, I went into this book with that kind of family life in mind. From everything the public saw, and perhaps didn't see, to the curiosity of what family life was truly like.
Two Sisters of Fayetteville was an interesting read. Obviously, since I started it at bedtime and stayed awake to finish it, it was one that kept my attention. It was a quick read, just a few hours.
I have mixed feelings about this book. It was interesting and gave a look at how things are different but while some were believable, other parts just seemed a bit much. Perhaps real but slightly exaggerated for the book? Or maybe it's all more real than many of us realize, truly being the way things work in that family lifestyle. Definitely a book that would start conversations.
There were parts I liked and enjoyed. Joanna being acknowledged for her talent, when the kids started standing up for themselves, choosing their own paths even if it meant going against their family's wishes.
And there were parts that I wish had been included more... more into the life of a large, Christian family similar to the Duggar's, just more overall instead of so much focus on the strict dad, super quick courtings and marriages. Let the relationships develop more, let us know the characters even more. I want to know more about Joanna, Daniel, Hannah, etc instead of just how strict life is for them. I want to know them. Yes, we got the sense that they didn't always love such a large family, always a little one to tend to, all the strict rules, just wanting out etc but would love to have gone deeper than just the surface of family life and what they thought.
I would love to know more, I would love to know where Joanna's path leads her, what happens next.
This was an interesting read, and it was different from what I'm used to reading.
I enjoyed going through the story as Joanna learns who she is and how to stand up to her parents to get what she wants.
Two Sisters of Fayetteville
by Tamar Anolic
Pub Date 01 Oct 2022
Christian | Teens & YA | Women's Fiction
I am reviewing a copy of Two Sisters of Fayetteville through Kindle/Amazon and Netgalley:
Joanna Upshaw who is seventeen along with her sixteen year old sister Hannah, are two of twelve siblings in an insular, conservative, and evangelical Christian family- same as the Duggars, whose reality show they watch on TV. Joanna is exhausted by the demands of helping her mother with the housework and childcare attendant in such a large family. She is also beginning to realize that she doesn’t measure up to her parents’ vision of a perfect Christian woman- or to any of their strict rules.
Joanna is closest to her sister Hannah, the one that shares her fatigue and anxiety. Both of them have spent their whole lives learning that their highest calling is to marry and have as many children as possible. However, as Joanna watches Hannah and two of their brothers court with the intention of marrying, she questions whether she is capable of doing the same, especially as her parents shoo her marriage prospects away one at a time. Afraid of becoming the old maid that never amounts to anything, Joanna finally makes plans to get away from her parents forever.
I give Two Sisters of Fayetteville five out of five stars!
I loved this book and felt for the two sisters. It seems uncredible that there are families out there that still live this way. It's a shame how Christian values and the way of Christ get so misunderstood and in some way abused. Christian faith is about freedom, forgiveness and love - not about rules.
This was an interesting look at how some families still live. Almost sounds like a Mormon family might live or some Amish.
I really enjoyed Joanna's journey.
This was a can't put down book for me.
My heart really went out to Joanna and her sister.
There's no one who is perfect except Jesus Christ Himself as it was meant to be.
No set of rules can make you perfect no matter how hard you try.
I think by the end of this book it's no wonder Joanna wanted to run. Some of this book exhausted even me trying to keep up with her mother's demands and all. I'm like just wow! But there's people out there in real life that are like that.
Sometimes it does a person good to have to make a break. I found myself rooting for this sweet girl and I loved " watching " her grow into the person she's meant to be.
5 stars for a job well done! I highly recommend!
My thanks for a copy of this book. I was NOT required to write a positive review. All opinions expressed are my own.
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